Are you brave enough to make changes in your life? My next guest in the Over 50 & Thriving series did just that. Unfortunately it was a health issue that finally made Linda Cooper from Mainly Cardigans decide what she wanted in life and what she didn’t want.
I’ve only recently discovered Linda’s website and was pleasantly surprised to read about her passion of creating designer handknits. I love knitting but sometimes it can be associated with a hobby for our grandmothers. Linda has changed that idea and shows that following your passion brings new found confidence After 50.
You can discover Linda and her creative designs through her website in the link at the end of her post.
Standing in the sunshine
I have been following Sizzling Towards 60 & Beyond for a few weeks now and I love it! To me, Sue has created a vision for older women that includes being healthy, fit, vibrant, engaged and loving the skin you are in.
My story is simple. I am a New Zealander who married young, spending my 20s and 30s raising children, working (librarian and children’s bookshop owner) and completing a degree in history. Fast forward to my 40s and I am divorced with one child at home and living in Australia.
Working in the publishing industry, completing a Masters degree, and gaining editing qualifications, during my 40s and 50s led to setting myself up as a freelance developmental editor specialising in historical fiction.
A year ago, however, I made a commitment to myself.
I no longer wanted to spend my time editing book manuscripts. I craved some form of change in my life – I felt a real need to learn more about me, to slow down and enjoy what I had but fear kept me from achieving this.
It took a serious health issue in the form of a cerebral aneurysm in my basilar tip artery to finally allow me to face head-on who I was, what I wanted to do in my post 60 life, what was important and what was most definitely not.
I now spend my days living – walking, spending time with loved ones, being there for grandchildren, enjoying new experiences while continuing to work, not as an editor but as a knitwear designer.
Knitting has always been an old friend. I love the way in which it calms me, slows me down and allows me to create something beautiful using nothing more than two sticks, some yarn and a mix of knit and purl stitches.
Being a designer taps into my creativity, something I had long suppressed, because it didn’t fit in with what others thought I should be doing. Being an editor was worthwhile; being a designer was not.
Oh, how I have changed. I do not care what others think anymore. It is my time.
Knitting is still widely thought of as a domestic craft. By aligning design and knitting to the public world through my work and my blog I am saying knitting and design count.
I am looking forward to 2019. New designs will be published, a book idea is circling in my head and my blog will focus on topics close to my heart: knitting history – not only of stitches, but the craft itself and how it relates to the lives of women past and present, the design and knitting process and growing my stitch library.
On the home front, trips to Ireland in March and back home to New Zealand later in the year are two things to look forward to. For the rest of the time, it is family, friends and good living.
Yes, I am standing in the sunshine – it is such a nice place to stand.
My name is Linda Cooper. I live in a Bayside suburb close to Brisbane, Australia where I combine my love of writing with designing and knitting.
A love of writing stems from my passion for history and literature. In a past life, have been a librarian, a children’s bookshop owner and working in the publishing industry including being a freelance book editor specialising in historical fiction manuscripts.
My aim as a designer is to create knitwear that inspires knitters to explore and express their creativity. The garment I enjoy designing the most is the humble cardigan. It lends itself to so many options – from the casual weekend cardigan over jeans or skirt/shorts to elegant evening or workday wear.